(pic from google)
The only way that you wouldn’t have heard about this book is if you were living under a rock. On a second thought, may be if not even then. This book is omnipresent… its on ‘Recommendations’ shelf of every book store, it all over TV shows and even on Oprah, its in bedrooms of most of your friends, its on every book blog you read, its even on the big screen. It’s near to impossible not to know about this book.
But if you still have missed this book here is the synopsis –
Elizabeth Gilbert, a 30 something year old sets off a year long vacation to Italy, India and Bali to find her true self after a terrible divorce and a bitter break up. In Italy she gorges on good, in India she embarks on a journey of spirituality and finally in Bali she falls in love again.
Sounds like an amazing book doesn’t it? It absolutely isn’t! This is an atrocious book that took me one whole month to read it. Every time I tried to read this book I hardly got through 4 pages before I either lost interest or fell asleep. This reminds me that I should thank Elizabeth Gilbert as I have now found a way to cure my insomnia.
I really won’t judge her decisions of leaving her husband, leaving everything that they had built for years and not having a kid (even though I fail to understand why and I actually felt sympathy for her husband and also I hate getting personal but it’s a memoir) I still say that she is a narcissist. She has no clue about life or the real hardships of life; she fails to see that actually her life isn’t all that bad and these kind of people irritate me the most. She keeps whining through the whole book and I guess every body has a limit of taking a meaningless rant and I reached mine at page 30 but still I continued hoping that the book will get better at some point but nada… it just kept getting worse and more irritating.
In the book she says that she is a bad traveler and I totally agree with her. She is so self-absorbed in her own grief and misery and whining and ranting that she fails to imbibe the beauty of the place. She lives in Italy for 4 months but doesn’t bother to visit any museums. The only reason she goes to Napa Valley is to eat pizza (and I thought I was a sinner of gluttony). She comes to India stays for 4 months and doesn’t even bother to visit Mumbai and acts like she has India all figured out. You just can’t come here stay at an Ashram in rural part of the country and say this is INDIA. To know India and its people you need to get out into the streets. You need to experience the dirt, the passion, and the love, the culture, the modernity, the rural and the urban India to actually say you know India. You just make statements like – “And maybe its in preparation for my trip to India that I decided to spend last week in Sicily – the most 3rd world section of Italy, and therefore not a bad place to go if you need to prepare yourself to experience extreme poverty” or “In India you don’t touch anything but yourself”. These statements made me furious at her… may be if she had bothered to connect with the country and really understand it I wouldn’t have been so offended. She goes to Bali and spends her time in house of the medicine man and Wayan (who I liked at 1st but in the end had no respect for her) and in bed of this older guy. This reminds me of something that irritated me throughout the whole book – Celibacy and Sex. She says this is a spiritual book but you find more talk about her celibacy (is it really that hard to stay celibate for a year) and sex (I really dint wanna know the condition you had thanks to too much of sex) than spirituality (which I still don’t think she gets).
The success of this book is thanks to the good marketing. The book is supposed to be witty but not even once did I smile (let alone laugh) but I kept rolling my eyes throughout this book. Her writing is easy to read but dead boring. It never manages to hold your attention. The only thing about this book I like is the cover (it’s very pretty and attractive) and her division of the book into 3 parts. Other than that nothing else appeals to me. I m actually surprised and disappointed that Oprah and Julia Roberts liked it and suggest it.
This plate of spaghetti is not really of my taste.
Ratings – 1 star out of 5 (half for the cover and half for marketing).